After a goalless draw in Germany, Liverpool and Augsburg do battle again on Thursday, and Kevin Hatchard expects another low-scoring affair...
"Augsburg have kept five clean sheets in their last seven games, and more than 50% of Liverpool's home games in the Klopp era have featured fewer than three goals."
Liverpool v Augsburg
Thursday February 25, 18:00
Live on BT Sport Europe
With Liverpool lagging behind in the race for the Premier League's top four, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp has admitted that winning the Europa League may well be his side's only chance of playing in the Champions League next season. It could be a huge week in the former Borussia Dortmund coach's Anfield tenure, as this clash with Augsburg is followed by Sunday's League Cup final against Manchester City at Wembley.
I said in last week's previews that Liverpool were far too short for the victory against Augsburg in Germany, and despite a goalless draw they are prohibitively priced once again at 1.454/9. The hosts may well come out on top - they have better players and fewer injury concerns - but given they have won just two of their last eight games at Anfield in all competitions, 1.454/9 is not a price to get excited about.
Augsburg have defied the odds in their first ever European jaunt, and they know an away goal would give them a huge chance of making the last 16. However, the concern is over where that goal will come from. Their best striker Raul Bobadilla is likely to miss the match with injury, and FCA have failed to score in four of their last eight games. Last season, Tobias Werner and Halil Altintop could be relied upon to chip in with goals, but their performances have declined badly this term.
There are personnel problems elsewhere, with midfielders Markus Feulner and Daniel Baier both injured. Their absence puts huge pressure on young Dominik Kohr to screen the back four, and it's not clear who will play alongside him.
The bet that stands out to me from this one is backing Under 2.5 Goals at 2.1411/10. Augsburg will try to keep things tight, and in terms of tactics, coach Markus Weinzierl matched Klopp stride for stride last week.
The Bavarians have kept clean sheets in five of their last seven games, and even though they have key players missing, I expect their discipline to hold firm. Liverpool continue to miss chances in games, and since Klopp took charge, eight of Liverpool's 14 games at Anfield have featured fewer than three goals.
2016 Europa League Knockout Phase P/L (1 pt per bet)
Points Staked: 6
Points Returned: 8.81
P/L: +2.81 points
Group Stage: +3.3 points